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N.K.Assumi (Advocate)     13 January 2011

Is computer software a literary work under copyright?

Does computer software and programmes falls under literary work so as to be protected under Copyrights?


 11 Replies

phaneendra (Advocate)     14 January 2011

 i think  it is a literary work and can be protected under Copyrights

Written works including software and databases


Software, that is computer programs, and games for games consoles are protected on the same basis as literary works.  Conversion of a program into or between computer languages and codes corresponds to adapting a work. Storing any work in a computer amounts to copying the work. In addition, running a computer program or displaying work on a video display unit (VDU) will usually involve copying and thus require the consent of the copyright owner.


Databases may receive copyright protection for the selection and arrangement of the contents. In addition, or instead, database right may exist in a database. This is an automatic right and protects databases against the unauthorised removal and re-use of the contents of the database.

phaneendra (Advocate)     14 January 2011


Software is copyrightable in India, but enforcement is very difficult.

 United States

In the United States, computer programs are literary works, under the definition in the Copyright Act

Mallik Karra (Done with AIBE)     14 January 2011

Yes, they are all protected under copyright act, 1957

1 Like

Amit patel (Programmer)     21 January 2011

Is registration for copyright of a software mandatory in India? Or we get the automatic copyright of software when we make them (like in US) & its better to get it registered for better evidence in the court, but it's optional?


Yes, in India Computer software is protected under Copyright Act,

but in US software is protected under Patent Act. 

1 Like


Registration of a Computer software under the Copyright Act is not mandatory in India. However, it is recommended as prima facie proof of Copyright ownership and assists in speedy and effective remedy in case of copyright infringement as under the Copyright Act, 1957, police has wide powers to take quick action against infringement.

1 Like

Reetu Dwivedi (Paralegal)     18 February 2011


1 Like

Nagaraja B S (Corporate Commercial & IP Lawyer)     07 March 2011

Yes it can be registered. Copyright registration is not compulsory. However, it would be easy to claim ownership, if it is registered.



Trademark Attorney & IP Lawyer

IP Lex Global Services

Email: nagaraja_bs@iplexglobal.in


Get it copyrighted online at :



Study the site,FAQ,everthing there before paying. They don't refund.

HANSA KASHYAP (--)     17 May 2012

Hai! I am a specialist in online IPR... In India, only embedded softwares and/or applications, which hold the primary responsibility for the functioning of a mechine, such as washing mechine..are patentable. Those softwares, which will serve as a basis for future develoment of softwares or only copyrightable. For further information.. hansa.lashyap@yahoo.co.in

HANSA KASHYAP (--)     22 May 2012

Yes. of course. copyrightable. But for your information, embedded softwares are not copyrightable and they are patentable.

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